Thursday, April 17, 2014

Stitchsperation Abudanza

Charles Bridge, shapes, Prague.

Rome. Venice. Prague. Three very different cities I recently visited with my mother. At the risk of sounding achingly cliche, I was overcome with an abundance of inspiration for my artwork.

Colusseum, shapes, Rome.

John Lennon Wall, texture, Prague.

Room of Maps, color, composition, layers, Vatican City.

I break down the visual inspiration taken from these photos into three categories: Texture, color, composition.

Under the Charles Bridge, shapes, Prague.

Texture, light, Rome.

Saturated life, Rome.

The colors in Italy are the colors I live in. The ochre, burnt umber, saturated hues.

Composition, colors, saturated life, Venice.

The gothic edges to Prague capture a layer of my disposition. Like dark, lacy lines overlaid on other images.

Texture, shapes, Prague.

Texture, composition, gothic edges to life, Prague.

And everywhere, the textures. And everywhere, watching the bursts caused by the sunlight.

Light, texture, Venice. 

Texture, color, Rome.

What you can't capture in these photos (and there is so much I can't capture) is the feeling of travel. The openness it brings to your imagination if you let it. And I try to always let it.

Composition, detail from Hall of Maps, Vatican City.

Mood, texture, composition, Old Jewish Cementery, Prague.

Composition, mood, carabinieri, Rome.

Especially at home. Must be open to your surroundings. Your world, both of the senses and of your emotions.

Light, color, Venice.

Color, layers, composition, Rome.

I will miss being called "bellissima." I felt like my most unrestricted self.

Colors, Rome.

Everything. Paul Klee at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice.

I felt bellissima.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Tiger Bea(s)t

Rebecca Grecco of Hugs are Fun, my swap partner for the Mr X Stitch Bestiary Swap, made me the most divine new feline friend.

Misha, by Rebecca Grecco, 2014.

I call this colorful x stitch tiger Misha! 

Rebecca has some sick skills with color and stitching. She is a talented pattern designer and warm, creative member of the online stitching community. I'm thrilled to have one of her pieces in my collection. Thank you, Rebecca!

Bamboo pendant by Rebecca Grecco.

I particularly love her kaleidoscopic rainbows and her sleek X stitch pendants. I need to make myself one from one of her kits, which she sells in her etsy shop.

The next few weeks will be quiet for me here. I am roaming, not worrying about being productive. Just taking in the beauty of faraway cities, sketching, and spending time with my sweet mami.

Vacation O, a-hoy.
See you on the flip slip, brutha.

Friday, March 28, 2014

When you miss your man, you do crazy things

How does a stitch artist with nerdish tendencies deal with her man traveling traveling more than 8,000 miles to far away Hong Kong?

Latitude,  chez squeeze.

By stitching him the latitude and longitude of home so he can find his way back. That's how.

Me? I'm headed to Prague next week.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Frabbit of the Fens

Say hello to my little friend.

Detail of Frabbit, 2014. Hand embroidery on layered watercolors.

Frabbit! I made him for Sarah Hennessy as part of the FFFoF Bestiary Swap that I organized for Mr X Stitch.

Frabbit in the sun.

He is a fishy rabbit. Or a rabbity fish. Frabbits have gills and can breath on land. Through the Middle Ages, Frabbits were thought to be mythical creatures, hidden away in the Fens of England.

The only recorded sighting of a frabbit was in 1745, in Lincolnshire, England, at the estate of Lord Lupino.

Based on a drawing from Lady Thomasin in 1745.

No one knows how Lupino managed to capture a male and female pair. The locals whispered about dark arts. What is known is that Lord Lupino's black-eyed daughter, Thomasin, sketched several studies of the furry, scaly beasts, before she mysteriously disappeared, along with the Frabbits, into the Fens.

Frabbit, 2014.

My Frabbit is based on Thomasin's drawings of the male Frabbit. She called him Fabian.

Hennesseflorium Swirlanicus, 2013.  Hand embroidery by
Sarah Hennessey.

Frabbit's new owner, Sarah, is a wonderful, inventive embroidery artist. I remember falling in love with "Hennesseflorium Swirlanicus," her studies of fantasy plants. Her etsy shop is filled with her clean, fresh, swirling designs.

Frabbit of the Fens.

Frabbit is a layered watercolor, stitched piece. Sarah reports that she likes him. I am SO relieved.

WIP: My cross stitched eyes. Slow going and huge.

Next up: More stitching on my giant, cross stitched eyes.

Coming soon: Wait to you see the amazing beast that I received from Rebecca as my part of the swap!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Whatever the hell I want to do

Oh yeah. I can do whatever the hell I want to do.

Tales of Accidental Bestiality. A new made up library catalog card.

Woke up this morning and remembered that I am free to do whatever the hell I feel like doing. Go where I want to go, meet whoever I want to meet, create whatever the hell I want to create.

Section of a new piece I finished last night. More to come.

I caught a glimpse of myself in the symbolic mirror and saw myself again. Saw all the art I've made and the new things I've tried and the good life and love that I've attempted to bring to people around me.   It feels great to remember who I am, what I am. The incredible responses that I get from other people I meet in the world.

Me riding the rails in NYC.
Photo by Erin Core.
That's freedom. Onward.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Seeking inspiration

I'm drifting a bit in the creative shoals lately. Kind of stuck in the silt.  No one can rescue me. I must rescue myself.

March 2014, Inspired to Stitch, featuring Michelle Kingdom.

I'm grateful to have my monthly Inspired to Stitch column for the Mr X Stitch website. Even if I'm struggling to make art myself, I get to have these amazing email conversations with artists about their work and their process.

Michelle Kingdom, who I interviewed for the March 2014 column, has a wonderful way of talking about her work, which is fantastic. Tiny, mysterious narrative worlds. I admire it so much. 

the years fell, and grew into vines. Hand embroidery by Michelle Kingdom.

She inspires me and challenges me to focus on the stories that I want to tell in thread. And in life.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

WIPs: Frabbit & a Giant Pair of Brown Eyes X Stitch

Working hard on a couple of projects.

Frabbit in various stages.

My Frabbit (named by the always imaginative LA artist Ellen Schinderman) is a layered watercolor stitched piece. Not sure how he is going to turn out.


And I designed and made the initial stitches on CocoaEyes, a self portrait of my eyes. A selfie, actually. The piece is huge and will take ages to complete. It's my first x stitch design and only the second x stitch I've attempted.

Let's go.